When I was offered an ARC copy of this book I jumped at the chance to get it because I've been meaning to read Julia London for awhile now and one can never read too many historical romances! The thing that struck me the most about the story line was that it wasn't your typical historical romance-the heroine in the story was a Courtesan. While reading other romances of this genre I always thought it would be interesting to have the story focus on the courtesan instead of having them be the "bad guy" as they are in most historical romances.
Kate Bergson is the mysterious former mistress of a cloth merchant. She has managed to catch the eye of the Prince of Wales who wants her as his mistress. However there is a catch-he's in the middle of a nasty divorce, and to keep the tons attention away from him, he orders Grayson Christopher Duke of Darlington into letting the ton (London Society) to think that Kate is his mistress instead. Neither is too happy with the Prince's plan. Kate might be a Courtesan, but she is not for sale for just any man that comes along. Then a funny thing happens...the ruse they have planned backfires, and the two realize that their feelings have grown deeper then friendship and deception. There are just a few things standing in their way-the prince, and the fact that it's unheard for a Duke and a Courtesan to be together. How will their love survive?
This book was a light read with some serious undertones to it's story lines. It deals with poverty, the hard life of courtesans, and slavery. It's something that you don't see in a lot of romances and kudos for Julia London for attempting to tackle them in this book. This is one of those books where my thoughts are all over the place-I can't decide if I liked it or not. The characters were both likable, but something just wasn't there for me. I'm still trying to figure out what was missing-and the only thing I can come up with is that maybe I've just been reading too many urban fantasty romances lately and it was hard for me to switch genres after reading about immortal warriors and demon slayer.
The fact I was able to finish reading the book, while finding the storyline plot a bit (ok a lot) unbelievable, what a great writer Julia London is.
I think I may have finally turned over to the dark side and fallen in love with urban fantasy romances. How else do you explain the fact that I found nothing wrong with a demon slayer falling in love with a demon, but have trouble with a duke falling in love with a courtesan? Deb from Book Magic gave a great review of this book on her site-go and check it out and say hello!
Sigh Meter: Low
Swoon Worthy Meter: Low
Cheesy Line/Groan out loud Meter: High
Cause Issue Meter: High (it's so well done-not preachy at all.)